2016 politics open thread, November 27 — December 3

Go at it!


179 thoughts on “2016 politics open thread, November 27 — December 3

  1. Last week’s political thread had 465 replies. Is that a record, CoC?

    This was in today’s NYT, not the National Review:

    “Mr. Trump received over 62 million votes, not all of them cast by homophobes, Islamaphobes, racists, sexists, misogynists or any other “ists.” I would caution Trump deniers that all of the crying and whining is not good preparation for the coming storm. The liberal media, both print and electronic, has lost all credibility. I am reasonably sure that none of the mainstream print media had stories prepared for a Trump victory. I watched the networks and cable stations in their midnight meltdown — embodied by Rachel Maddow explaining to viewers that they were not having a “terrible, terrible dream” and that they had not died and “gone to hell.”

    The media’s criticism of Trump’s high-level picks as “not diverse enough” or “too white and male” — a day before he named two women and offered a cabinet position to an African-American — magnified this fact.”

    Can’t tell if Maureen Dowd is having a “get off my lawn” moment with her pointed comments (elsewhere in the column) re participation trophies, or a real conversion experience.

  2. Re: Carrier – given its parent company’s status as a gov contractor, it is gong to be interesting to watch how much influence Trump will try to exert over it. Because of laws and regulations and all of that. Maybe this will be one of those things that he just tears up and makes no longer applicable? Or just chooses to ignore it and no one cares? Who knows!

  3. The liberal media, both print and electronic, has lost all credibility.

    It would be funny if Jill Stein ends up correct and the Russians hacked the election and Hillary ends up the president after all. I put the odds at 1:20. It’s been a crazy election so why not go all in?

  4. Kate,

    Before the election, I think Democrats and Republicans were in agreement that a corporation’s decision to move jobs overseas was none of the government’s business. That seems to have changed.

  5. Oh please, Maureen Dowd is an idiot. Anyone who eats an ENTIRE pot cookie when the package says to eat 1/8 and then whines when she gets sick and thinks marijuana should be banned is not competent to write for the NY Times. And she has always had Hillary-Hatred Derangement Disorder, so that’s not new.

    Oh, and she whined when she got to Saudi Arabia because it turns out it’s rilly hot there, and her custom-made silk chador made her sweat.

  6. I am totally and utterly creeped out by the known Russian interventions in this election, and it saddens me that no one seems to care. However, even if they did manage to hack some voting machines, a recount isn’t going to catch it, especially for machines with no paper ballots. I don’t think anything will come of this recount, and I think it is a silly distraction.

  7. RMS – you have been cracking me up lately. MD has always had some weird hatred of HRC. She also thinks that men are obsolete. Definitely a deep thinker of the boomer generation.

  8. Other than Cuban Americans being a voting block in the swing state of Florida, is there a reason the Chinese and Vietnamese communists are major trading partners with full diplomatic relations and we still have such a strange relationship with Cuba?

  9. “Oh, and she whined when she got to Saudi Arabia because it turns out it’s rilly hot there, and her custom-made silk chador made her sweat.”

    I am cracking up !

  10. I know Dowd is an idiot, but I thought that she was a left-wing idiot. Most of what appeared in her column today could have been written by Peggy Noonan.

    RMS, your comment led me to Google her Clinton Derangement Syndrome:

    “A Media Matters analysis of Dowd’s columns found that 72 percent of her work between November 1993 and June 2014 included negative tropes against the Clintons, including regularly portraying Hillary Clinton as an unlikeable, power-hungry phony. In the year following, all 17 of Dowd’s columns with significant mentions of Clinton were negative.”

  11. The Cuban Americans are a key voting bloc in a swing state, whereas the Vietnamese Americans are dispersed and don’t have the same level of antipathy to Vietnam. Chinese Americans largely are sympathetic to mainland China.

  12. My sibling called me up from the U.K. He was very concerned at how we were doing because he had seen clips of the Alt Right and minorities being afraid. He asked if our kids were fine at school.
    He was also afraid of us being in a battleground state (didn’t ask him what his exact concern was with this piece).
    I was really sad at Fred’s news on the other thread and didn’t seem appropriate to post what’s happening in my neighborhood.
    Tons of Amazon boxes lying undisturbed on porches, neighbors climbing on ladders to put up lights and decorations. Lots of people bringing Christmas trees home.

  13. The last two election posts have garnered the most comments of all our posts — 465 and 431. You all do like talking politics!

    I keep thinking the most likely reason for a possible Trump presidency downfall would the the conflict of interest issue. It’s almost insurmountable, so I think he has to bend over way backward to avoid any problem Today I heard a pundit suggest the Trump kids should step away from their family business responsibilities, but I don’t agree that is necessary.

  14. I tried to impress upon DD that a daughter of immigrants had been offered the position of the U.S. ambassador to the UN. DD asked why I was telling her this, was the lady my friend ? On hearing that I was not her friend, she promptly lost interest.
    Oh, well….

  15. Regarding jobs moving overseas: I think China, Korea and Japan have government tightly integrated with industrial research. I think their approaches would probably violate our antitrust laws. They also have minimal enforcement of environmental law (China) and not-particularly-good enforcement of engineering safety standards for infrastructure (China and Korea). Japan has problems similar to the U.S. with manufacturing going overseas due to the cost of labor/regulatory compliance. Singapore relies on immigrant labor but doesn’t let immigrants stay if they aren’t working. All of these approaches are different from the historical U.S. approach.

    I don’t know what my opinion on all this is, but perhaps economists who expected global trade to have net benefit expected a more level playing field. Maybe the U.S. government needs to intervene more, consider tax law carefully and to consider not just whether regulations are “worthwhile” by U.S. standards but to at least quantify whether they are “worthwhile” by global standards and, if they are not, consider tariffs or trade agreement changes.

  16. I know Dowd is an idiot, but I thought that she was a left-wing idiot.

    Remember back in the 90s…

    The Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) was a non-profit 501(c)(4) corporation[1] founded in 1985 that, upon its formation, argued the United States Democratic Party should shift away from the leftward turn it took in the late 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. The DLC hailed President Bill Clinton as proof of the viability of Third Way politicians and as a DLC success story.

    The general consensus seems to be that the Democratic party was putting too much emphasis on social issues and not putting enough emphasis on economic issues. For example, I don’t recall Hillary promising to get intimately involved in the management of major American companies on behalf of their employees. Something the Republican President-Elect is now doing.

  17. That should read, ” Something the Republican President-Elect repeatedly promised to do and is now doing.”

  18. Maureen dowd has included commentary from her brother Kevin in her columns for many years, usually at holiday time The Dowd brothers IIRC went to school with Pat Buchanan, and in any case embrace his views.. This is not satire, nor does it represent some sort of change in her views. This column was the 2016 entry written by Kevin.

  19. Meme, I totally missed that last line of the preamble: “Well, here is what Kevin, an affluent, educated suburbanite, has to say in his column, titled an “Election Therapy Guide for Liberals”:

    No wonder Maureen sounded like she was channeling someone else, because she was. Thanks for pointing that out.
    I wonder if she paid him for doing her work for her though.

  20. “The general consensus seems to be that the Democratic party was putting too much emphasis on social issues and not putting enough emphasis on economic issues. For example, I don’t recall Hillary promising to get intimately involved in the management of major American companies on behalf of their employees.”

    Well, to the extent that Clinton had promised to continue in the path that Obama had begun, she would have found herself intimately involved in matters such as the DOL overtime rule recently blocked by a federal judge. That rule was ostensibly promulgated to protect American workers from the management of their companies.

  21. What now for Cuba ? It was interesting reading up on history since Fidel took over and the island’s current state. And how to say the right thing when someone controversial passes away was also an interesting read.

  22. Trump presidency downfall would the the conflict of interest issue. It’s almost insurmountable

    No one cares. Only Hillary can be corrupt. Trump engaging in self-dealing and outright theft is just him being smart. You know you don’t give a damn about it, CoC, and neither does Scarlett or Milo or any of the other Hillary-haters. Trump can do anything he wants and no one cares.

  23. I dislike Hillary but I don’t think she is the only politician capable of corruption. I am more bothered by people who use political office for personal gain than I am by people who use bankruptcy court and questionable business practices for personal gain. I’m not sure why- I guess I expect greed from businessmen and hope people enter politics for more idealistic reasons.

  24. I am more bothered by people who use political office for personal gain

    Well, certainly Donald would never do that. That’s why he’s putting his assets in a blind trust. Oh wait.

  25. When someone’s business is the brand of that person, I cannot figure out how a blind trust would ever be used. It doesn’t make sense and if people thought about it for 2 seconds, they should know that there will never be a blind trust. People either just don’t care or are stupid. I am not sure which is worse.

  26. I don’t get the hoopla over having a blind trust either. Even if Trump put all his businesses in one, he still knows what legislation would benefit them and what would hurt them.

  27. WCE said “I guess I expect greed from businessmen and hope people enter politics for more idealistic reasons.”
    So I guess Trump just flips off his greedy businessman switch and flips on the idealistic politician switch? Hmmm, I did not know it was so easy

  28. I know everyone here just shrugs their shoulders and says “there isn’t any way he can wall off his business interests” (funny, Bloomberg did it), but keep in mind that he is presiding over a country in which a lot of people did not vote for him and utterly dislike him. There are also a lot of world leaders and global businessmen who think he may be weak and manipulable. It doesn’t matter if he manages to be perfection itself with regards to ethics, all that matters is appearances. If he appears to be corrupt, he will have trouble getting everyone on board. And if the world thinks he is corruptible, he is going to get a lot of foreign government and business leaders trying to push him into temptation, whether he even realizes it or not.

  29. I thought that Bloomberg did not put most of his stuff in a blind trust, either. He just was no longer the one making the day to day decisions? And he did use a blind trust for securities/etc., but not for his actual business? Regardless, I don’t see how Trump does it. Trump is the brand. I think it is very worrisome and should be a reason not to vote for him, but others disagreed. We get what we deserve.

  30. I see that Trump is doing his usual schtick of crazed Twitter ranting to take attention off the negative reporting on conflicts of interest. Politico says “t’s not insignificant that Trump’s tweet also successfully shifted the media narrative away from negative stories about Trump’s many conflicts of interest. The New York Times published a front-page investigation into the conflicts on Sunday.”


  31. That article says what I thought – most of Bloomberg’s stuff wasn’t in a blind trust. He still maintained some control. Some of it was put in a blind trust.

  32. I’m struck by how anti-Trump the Wall Street Journal is today. The article about the devastation brought to America’s small business people by the lack of pliant immigrant labor. The haughty dismissal of his claims that he actually won the popular vote. An article detailing the internal turmoil of his team.

    I’d be hard pressed to imagine their beating up on Hillary more.

  33. I’m betting Trump is going to be everthing conservatives feared Hillary would be times 10. Up to and including nominating his rabidly pro-abortion Federal Judge sister to SCOTUS.

    We shall see…

  34. He would be a fool to…

    That’s what they’ve said about every political decision he’s made. Yet here we are.

  35. Pence would likely spontaneously combust if he nominated a pro partial-birth abortion judge. It would be worth it just to watch that happen!

  36. I don’t hate Hillary. I do still believe that the MSM will be more vigilant toward Trump’s transgressions than they would have been toward HRC’s. That and the loyal opposition should help keep any potential Trump kleptocracy in check. We shall see.

  37. CoC – how do you see the loyal opposition keeping Trump in check? The Republicans all fell in line and they control everything. Checks and balances only work if people are at opposition and willing to break ranks with their party. It doesn’t seem like those two things are going to happen.

  38. WCE,

    However, in contrast to the rosy idea that their generational experience with hardship makes it easier for them to relate to their poorer countrymen, Zhao believes that 30 years of unbridled economic growth “without much moral or legal constraints” has enshrined social Darwinism as the guiding doctrine for much of the Chinese society. The widespread worship of winners and contempt of losers prevent the society from developing any “political correctness” that shields disadvantaged communities such as women and the disabled from abuses by those with wealth and power. “Over time, those who master the rules of this winner-takes-all environment have developed a hardened heart and a high self-regard.” They are convinced that those left behind must have something deplorable and are alarmed by any welfare program aiming to lift them up. Trump’s message is a loud confirmation of this value system.

    Despite the system being so different folks still fall into fairly standard political categories.

    That said, Trump is a repudiation of that idea. He thinks the least among us need to have their competition artificially restrained in order to give them a better chance in life, drive up their wages, etc. As the WSJ notes, that this will spark inflation and drive many small business out of business, isn’t much of a concern.

  39. The Republicans all fell in line and they control everything.

    They have most certainly not fallen in line. Bannon is 110% behind the $1 trillion in infrastructure spending and republican budget hawks in congress are as opposed as they can be at this stage of the game. I respect them for that. Now, if they all cave? That’s another story.

  40. With the exception of Kasich, they pretty much all fell in line. If Kasich runs, I am going to vote for him even though I abhor some of his views. Has Mittens issued his apology yet?

  41. “CoC – how do you see the loyal opposition keeping Trump in check?”

    Well, it remains to be seen. I expect Dems to raise holy hell if and when they see significant conflict of interest, and it would be widely reported in the popular media. That will sway popular opinion to some degree. I understand minority representatives can wield some power in initiating certain investigations, but I’m not sure how that would play out. Would Republicans be able to continue supporting possible Trump improprieties if they become blatant? Maybe. And it all depends on what are considered to be serious violations.

  42. The WSJ and National Review have questioned many of Trump’s proposals and initial appointments. I don’t see the Republicans falling in line at all. Lots of conservatives doubt, for good reason, that Trump is actually one of them.

  43. “Or you could just award a portion of electors based on the portion of the state’s popular vote, without regard to geographic distribution.”

    I like this idea, perhaps combined with two electors/state being awarded to the overall state winner. It eliminates the influence of gerrymandering, puts individual votes back into play, and also gives third party candidates a better shot at getting some of the electoral votes.

  44. Once it became clear that the Ohio State attacker was not using a gun, but ramming people with a car and then stabbing them, was anyone honestly surprised to discover that this was yet another act of “senseless violence” committed by a Muslim immigrant? Apparently, both the mainstream media and the authorities are at a loss.

    “The motive was unknown, although law enforcement sources said Artan posted a rant on social media prior to the incident. Officials said the attack was clearly deliberate and may have been planned in advance.

    “This was done on purpose,” Stone said.

    No kidding. Maybe he was angered by the results of the election.

  45. Amazing, if this is true, which it appears to be:

    “The Lantern” — OSU’s campus newspaper — ran an interview with Artan just a few months ago, in which he criticized the school for not having Muslim prayer rooms on campus.

    “I wanted to pray in the open, but I was kind of scared with everything going on in the media,” he stated. “I’m a Muslim, it’s not what the media portrays me to be.”

    “I don’t blame them,” he cotinued. “It’s the media that put that picture in their heads so they’re just going to have it, and it’s going to make them feel uncomfortable.”


    If this guy had been the Usual Disturbed Shooter with ties to a white nationalist group, the mainstream media would have been all over it, claiming that Donald Trump had normalized the wingnuts.

  46. When they were reporting it as a shooter, I assumed white guy. The obly thing that would have surprised me was to find out that a woman was involved.

  47. Once it became clear that the Ohio State attacker was not using a gun, but ramming people with a car and then stabbing them, was anyone honestly surprised to discover that this was yet another act of “senseless violence” committed by a Muslim immigrant?

    Given the number of mass attacks there have been in the last 10 years or so and that the majority of attackers have not been muslim immigrants, my first assumption is that the perpetrator is a white male.

  48. As part of my Thanksgiving resolution to avoid stereotyping for a week, I decided to guess the perpetrator was a middle-aged, female Caucasian Unitarian.

  49. We certainly don’t want to jump to conclusions. He might have had personal problems that pushed him over the edge.

  50. so it looks like the pick for HHS is someone who not only has vowed to completely dismantle the ACA, but also wants to dismantle Medicare and Medicaid. So much for moderation in the healthcare domain.

  51. Price, a 62-year-old six-term congressman and orthopedic surgeon, has chaired the House Budget Committee for the past two years. A bookish conservative from the Atlanta suburbs, Price has worked closely with House Speaker Paul Ryan to assemble GOP budgets aimed at reducing the annual deficit.

    “I am humbled by the incredible challenges that lay ahead and enthusiastic for the opportunity to be a part of solving them on behalf of the American people,” Price said Tuesday.

    Last week, Price said whatever Republicans do to replace Obama’s health care law will bear a “significant resemblance” to a 2015 measure that was vetoed by the president. That bill would have gutted some of the health care law’s main features: Medicaid expansion, subsidies to help middle-class Americans buy private policies, the tax penalties for individuals who refused to get coverage and several taxes to support coverage expansion. The bill would have delayed implementation for two years.

    Price insisted that Republicans can keep the protections for those with existing medical conditions without mandating that all individuals carry coverage or pay a penalty to support an expanded insurance pool. Price said Republicans want to address “the real cost drivers” of health care price spikes, which he said were not necessarily sicker patients, but a heavy regulatory burden, taxes and lawsuits against medical professionals.

    Well, I’ll be curious to see how they propose doing that.

  52. It will be very sad if they gut the Medicaid expansion, particularly for many Midwestern states. My state refused to expand it, so we’ll just KOKO without coverage, so yay!

  53. According to WaPo
    “One of the 18 members of the House GOP Doctors Caucus, Price also supports major changes to both Medicaid and Medicare, health insurance pillars of the Great Society programs of the 1960s. Under his vision, both programs would cease to be entitlements that require them to provide coverage to every person who qualifies. Instead, like many House Republicans, he wants to convert Medicaid into block grants to states – which would give them more latitude from federal requirements about eligibility rules and the medical services that must be covered for low-income Americans. ”

    “For Medicare, Price favors another idea long pushed by conservatives, switching it from a “defined benefit” to a “defined contribution.” With that, the government would give older or disabled Americans financial help for them to buy private insurance policies.”

  54. Yeah, go ahead, try to “reform” Medicare. The old people will rise up, as usual.

  55. The “old people” will be grandfathered in, no worries.

    It’s the future old people who will be affected, and we already know that the current system, like Social Security, is not sustainable. It’s not clear that Trump really supports any comprehensive overhaul of these programs.

  56. “The house is 2,509 square feet, and according to the listing, it was sold for $600,000 in March 2000.
    Pence will be forking over almost $6,000 a month to live there. ”

    Not a bad investment if demand is high enough to keep it rented at about that much.

  57. Not sure what to think of this new Texas law, but surely the current system is not optimal:

    “Abortion providers generally use third-party special waste services to dispose of fetal remains. Previous rules allowed fetal remains, along with other medical tissue, to be ground up and discharged into a sewer system, incinerated, or handled by some other approved process before being disposed of in a landfill.”

  58. Clearly the only logical thing was to require burials or cremations! We should implement that for all medical waste. Obviously.

  59. to be ground up and discharged into a sewer system, incinerated, or handled by some other approved process before being disposed of in a landfill

    I plan to be incinerated after I’m gone. And I find the burial of corpses in cemeteries, and the knowledge that they’re down there rotting, to be disgusting. So I’m not sure why the landfill is worse.

  60. I don’t think there’s a law in Oregon, but I know firsthand that cremation rather than landfill disposal is the default option for fetal remains at the hospital that handles late abortion in Oregon, because I had that discussion with the nurse. It would be odd for the guy operating the backhoe at the landfill to discover a late-term fetus, and he might wonder.

  61. It doesn’t seem too much to ask that fetal remains, which are human remains, be treated with dignity, rather than being treated as trash.

  62. Ivy, I don’t know if you were asking about Oregon or Texas. In Oregon, I think that all the cremated human remains (fetal, term infant, or adult) from the Medical School Hospital are landfilled if they are not dispositioned by an executor/relative. The law says,”The method of disposition must be in the least costly and most environmentally sound manner that complies with law.” I think only fetuses > 20 weeks gestation are cremated because, while decomposition is fairly rapid, the decomposition rate for a 12″ fetus vs. a 18″ term infant is not all that different.

  63. My friend who used to teach in the Palo Alto Unified School District was reminiscing fondly about how parents used to buy her gift cards to the local spa.

  64. And if I believed for one second that the Texas legislature was doing this out of concern for human dignity, we could have a discussion about whether this is the right thing to do or not. Laws like this make me (a person who thinks we should have reasonable restraints on abortion and who personally would like to see way fewer abortions) want to argue for no control at all by the government regarding abortions. I don’t think the government deserves or can handle such responsibility at this point.

  65. Why not have the discussion anyhow?
    If it’s the right thing to do, then do it, regardless of the motives of the Texas legislature. If there are concerns about the cost and its potential effect on the poor, then ask prolife groups to volunteer to cover the costs. Many Catholic cemeteries already have areas set aside for miscarried or aborted babies. Burying the dead is a corporal work of mercy.

  66. “Abortion providers generally use third-party special waste services to dispose of fetal remains. Previous rules allowed fetal remains, along with other medical tissue, to be ground up and discharged into a sewer system, incinerated, or handled by some other approved process before being disposed of in a landfill.”

    Let’s extend burials to miscarriages too, right? However, my miscarriage remains would have been difficult as it lasted over a week and would involve a lot of scooping out of toilets in public places. So the fetal remains of my miscarriage were discharged into the sewer. Why should handling of miscarriage remains be any different than abortion remains?

    I’m all for reducing the number of abortions, but I prefer that we try to reduce the demand rather than the supply.

  67. I am happy to have the fetal remains buried/cremated if (1) the government pays for all of it with no cost borne by the woman and all abortion providers get adequate funding for all costs associated with it, (2) cemeteries and crematoriums are required to accept such fetal remains and (3) if a woman checks a box that states that she wants no information about the remains, that is the end of it. But we all know at this isn’t about saving the souls of the fetuses and everything to do with controlling women and restricting access.

  68. Tcmama – as currently written, this, too, applies to missed miscarriages in which a woman has to have a D&C. Not just abortions.

  69. In other stupid things that Texas does that completely contradict their pro-life stance, they are cutting payments to children for therapy. They consistently underfund child protective services and education, so there is exactly zero chance that they are going to use state tax dollars to fund this additional cost for cremating remains. It will be another tax passed on to women seeking abortion services to serve as a disincentive for using the services. I have no problem with pro life but you have to be pro doing good things for kids their whole lives, particularly kids at risk and 0-5.

  70. In order to prove their prolife bonafides, are states required to provide all requested funding for every single program, service, or product that could affect the well-being of children?

  71. “Why should handling of miscarriage remains be any different than abortion remains?”

    Maybe because abortions are planned medical procedures that take place in a medical facility, and miscarriages (spontaneous abortions) generally take place somewhere other than a medical facility?

  72. So if Dad dies in the hospital he gets a funeral, but if he dies in the street he just gets swept up by the street sweeper? Okay.

  73. “But we all know at this isn’t about saving the souls of the fetuses and everything to do with controlling women and restricting access.”

    You’re right that it has nothing to do with “saving the souls” of unborn children. Their souls are unaffected by the manner in which other people decide to dispose of their remains. And, with respect to “controlling women and restricting access” — assuming that this law will actually impose additional costs on abortion patients, do you honestly believe that women will opt to carry a pregnancy to term rather than pay that additional cost? Planned Parenthood reportedly enjoyed a “surge” of increased donations after the election — why not use those funds to subsidize any additional costs for indigent patients?

  74. What a surprise.

    “Authorities believe the Ohio State University student responsible for Monday’s attack on campus was inspired by terrorist propaganda from ISIS and deceased Yemeni-American cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, two law enforcement sources said.

    The sources point to Abdul Razak Ali Artan’s Facebook posts before his short-lived rampage on the Columbus campus. The posts referenced Awlaki, who was a leader of al Qaeda in Yemen. Sources also note the style of the attack was encouraged by ISIS in a recent online magazine.”

    So far, Islamaphobia doesn’t seem to be inspiring nearly as much violence against innocents as is, well, Islam.

  75. We’ve simply GOT to do something about young men. From age 16 to 35, perhaps they should be rounded up and kept in camps. They’re so violent! But at least that Christian terrorist Dylann Roof was found mentally able to stand trial. He’s going to defend himself, too, so that should be 40-50 years’ worth of government money keeping him alive and up to his ears in appeals.

  76. As to your question at 4:43 pm – they need to do a heck of a lot better than they are doing now. And they need to have some kind of plan for what we are going to do with respect to all of these unwanted babies who are born. I don’t much care if is the government or private charities that take on these tasks, but someone needs to do it. No magical thinking that all of these kids are going to be just fine. Or the movement can rebrand it self as the pro-birth/anti-life after womb movement.

  77. Dylann Roof did not claim to be inspired by any Christian scriptures, teachings, or groups. Indeed, he attacked Christians. In a church.

    The Ohio State attacker was inspired by ISIS, which has instructed its followers to attack the kufar (infidels) with vehicles and knives.

    “Though being an essential part of modern life, very few actually comprehend the deadly and destructive capability of the motor vehicle and its capacity of reaping large numbers of casualties if used in a premeditated manner. This was superbly demonstrated in the attack launched by the brother Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel who, while traveling at the speed of approximately 90 kilometers per hour, plowed his 19-ton load-bearing truck into crowds celebrating Bastille Day in Nice, France, harvesting through his attack the slaughter of 86 Crusader citizens and injuring 434 more.

    The method of such an attack is that a vehicle is plunged at a high speed into a large congregation of kufar, smashing their bodies with the vehicle’s strong outer frame, while advancing forward – crushing their heads, torsos, and limbs under the vehicle’s wheels and chassis – and leaving behind a trail of carnage.

    Vehicles are like knives, as they are extremely easy to acquire.”


    Of course, we still don’t know the motive. And CAIR has warned us not to jump to any silly conclusions about the connections between this attack and Islam.

  78. “And they need to have some kind of plan for what we are going to do with respect to all of these unwanted babies who are born. I don’t much care if is the government or private charities that take on these tasks, but someone needs to do it.”

    Kate, crisis pregnancy centers are already doing this. The local center I support provides assistance to HALF of the babies born in this county, and over 100,000 women in multiple states. With private donations. Whether the mother chooses to raise her child or make an adoption plan, she gets loving and practical support.

  79. I support pregnancy crisis centers if they give accurate information. But I don’t think that is sufficient. Kids don’t stop having needs once they are no longer babies.

  80. In our area, the pregnancy center provides counseling/ultrasounds and then the ecumenical Christian charity takes over for maternity/infant/children’s clothing until school age, at which point another charity (I think not religiously affiliated) takes over and provides clothing for school age kids. I found it somewhat humorous that I went to the same maternity closet for clothes during my pregnancy with Baby WCE that I had donated to 5 years earlier.

    I subscribe to the Facebook page for the clothing charity, because who else is going to have 6 pairs of 4T boys pajamas to donate in their moment of need?

  81. I think it goes a bit further than donating clothing. I wholeheartedly agree with RMS and Kate as well – the general Republican stance of pro-life and then defunding programs that actually help the children that they want to be forced to be born is incredibly hypocritical. And yes, I do believe that funding most of these programs should be part of a true pro-life platform. Same with the death penalty.

    I do believe that life begins at conception, especially after going through pregnancy myself. But I also believe that the mother and father’s choices outweigh that fact, and that abortion should be safe, legal, accessible and rare. Shaming mothers – especially those who have to struggle with the horrific decision to end a pregnancy late in the term or who have to go through the process of a D&C – is unthinkable to me. And let’s be clear – this is not about anything but shaming women.

  82. Of course it goes beyond clothing. Our women’s center helps with prenatal care, parenting classes, material and emotional support, and unconditional love. Women and their children can get support from the Center for years after birth. We have two dozen centers in 8 different states, with more centers opening each year.

    There are all kind of programs that help children. The government cannot fully fund them all. Sometimes difficult decisions need to be made about competing priorities. Claiming that a decision to eliminate or reduce government funding for one particular program is evidence that the decision-maker doesn’t “care” about children is absurd.

  83. “And let’s be clear – this is not about anything but shaming women.”

    How does a law that requires abortion centers to treat fetal remains as the human remains that. they. are. rather than as trash shame women?

  84. Considering the utmost importance republicans put on curbing a women’s rights, being anti-abortion and calling it being pro-life, and then turning around and defunding programs that supporting that very same life, is absolutely without a doubt absurd.

    Maybe you personally haven’t experienced a miscarriage or have undergone abortion to understand the shame part of it. Maybe one needs ot be an empathetic person to understand such things.

  85. I have had an incomplete miscarriage that required a D&C. All these years, I have not thought about what happened to my baby’s remains. I hope the baby’s remains were treated with dignity, not thrown into the sewer.

  86. Dell, maybe you need to read what I posted and respond to that, rather than making assumptions and accusations.

    Anon for this,
    I also hope that your child’s remains were treated with dignity.

  87. While I am vehemently pro-choice, I think it is demogoguery to say that because someone is “pro-life” that means that person is mostly intending to “generally curb women’s rights and shame women.” I think that shuts down the conversation and ends all possibilities of moving forward. It’s similar to how someone who is not for every affirmative action program is deemed a “racist.”

  88. I don’t think pro-life necessarily means you are trying to curb women’s rights and shame women. But when all you do is support measures that address the fetus when it is inside the woman and not outside of the woman, it is the only logical conclusion that I can draw. I think that the Catholic Church goes about it in the correct way and that they do have a true pro-life agenda. I think the Texas legislature does not and is only pro-birth, which I find shameful and not appropriate for a state government.

  89. In Texas, those things are related, Mafalda. I would love if the state would get on board with sex education that actually educates people on birth control and made birth control available at wholesale cost. But they continue to stick with abstinence only. And then they make it harder for minors to obtain low cost birth control and then they make it harder for low income women of any age to obtain abortions if either their birth control fails or they don’t abstain and become pregnant. You might have to drive more than 300 miles to get an abortion in certain parts of the state.

  90. I am catholic and pro life for myself. I don’t feel it is my place or my state’s place to make decisions for someone else’s pregnancy unless I am willing to raise that child or provide the resources to do so.

  91. Well, now that Romney is goveling, he is about the only one left. Wow, I hope Romney is going to get some big reward for his humiliation

  92. Why did the House Democrats keep Nancy Pelosi in power? Some of you may not be in the market areas for conservative media advertising, but whenever Republicans wants to vilify a Democratic opponent, they can always fall back on associating him or her with “Nancy Pelosi!” in sinister-looking photos. And this has been true for over a decade now.

  93. I don’t know, Kate, I think it’s time for a change. I think putting someone younger and leftier in charge instead of Pelosi might have been a good idea. I know she can get things done, but…

  94. RMS – I don’t think a change would have been bad, but not to Ryan. All he does is spend his time going to yoga classes and he is pro-life. He has a tough district. He isn’t what I want to see the Dems become.

  95. Re. the next generation of Democrats — I’m a fan of my Rep in Congress, Seth Moulton (who was one of the people advocating for Ryan over Pelosi). He comes across as very thoughtful and reasonable. I think he also has crossover appeal to both elites and non-elites; he has multiple degrees from Harvard, but he is also a Marine who did four tours of duty in Iraq.

  96. I’m a bit dismayed about any precedent the Carrier coup might set, but others say that once corporate tax rates are lowered and other measures taken this type of govt dealing will be minimized. Anyhow, I thought of Rhett when I read this by Scott “Dilbert” Adams. It does make sense.

    One of the things I will enjoy about the Trump presidency is watching non-business writers try to explain his methods. Case in point, the recent stories about Ford and Carrier keeping some parts of their manufacturing in the United States because Trump negotiated/bullied them into staying. If you tell that story through a political filter – which is all I have seen so far – you focus on the facts. In this case, the political story is that both the Ford and Carrier situations are exaggerated claims of success.

    The political filter misses the story completely. As usual.

    Here’s the real story. You need a business filter to see it clearly. In my corporate life I watched lots of new leaders replace old leaders. And there is one trick the good leaders do that bad leaders don’t: They make some IMMEDIATE improvement that everyone can see. It has to be visible, relatively simple, and fast.


    Because humans are not rational. Our first impressions rule our emotions forever. Trump has a second chance to make a first impression because his performance as President is fresh ground. Trump is attacking the job like a seasoned CEO, not like a politician. He knows that his entire four-year term will be judged by what happens before it even starts. What he does today will determine how much support and political capital he has for his entire term.

    So what does a Master Persuader do when he needs to create a good first impression to last for years? He looks around for any opportunity that is visible, memorable, newsworthy, true to his brand, and easy to change.

    Enter Ford.

    Enter Carrier.

    Trump and Pence recognized these openings and took them. Political writers will interpret this situation as routine credit-grabbing and exaggerated claims. But business writers will recognize Trump’s strategy as what I will call the “new CEO Move.” Smart CEOs try to create visible victories within days of taking the job, to set the tone. It’s all about the psychology.

    If you are looking at Trump’s claims of success with Ford and Carrier in terms of technical accuracy and impact on the economy, you will be underwhelmed. But if you view it through a business filter and understand that psychology is the point of the exercise, you’re seeing one of the best new CEO moves you will ever see….

    The political press will dismiss Ford and Carrier with fact-checking. But the stock market will be smarter. Experienced business people recognize the “new CEO” move and they know how powerful and important it is.

    If you are worried about Trump’s talent for leadership, this should help set your mind at ease. He hasn’t even started the job and he’s already performing better than any past president in the same phase.

  97. It is striking against the video that’s been going around Facebook showing Obama at a town hall during the recent campaign, responding to a question about the Carrier situation by a discouraged and disheartened voter, and all Obama does is mock Trump saying that there’s nothing he can do about Carrier moving unless Trump has a magic wand.

  98. If Carrier weren’t located in Indiana, I doubt Trump could have done much (Obama’s point), since this is really a state issue. I also think Carrier played Trump and Pence.

    I am not dazzled by the new CEO move. Still waiting to see how Trump will deliver (or not) on his many promises to middle class America.

  99. CoC. thanks for sharing that. A different perspective that I had not considered. And I cannot in a million years imagine Clinton pulling that one off, for better or for worse. I too was underwhelmed by the facts, but am willing to be persuaded by Dilbert.

  100. What will be interesting to see, if Trump continues to be directly involved with individual companies, is the reaction of traditional pro-business conservatives. Obama took a lot of heat for “picking winners” in industry and historically we have a very complex history of government supporting some industries, then backing off, and then intruding again. Personally, if government focused on setting the stage for business to do its thing (tax structure, better infrastructure, evenly applied regulation, enforcement of regulation), I’d support that. Meddling on a company or industry basis leaves me a bit queasy. Anyone know where Trump stands on Ex-Im?

  101. “Personally, if government focused on setting the stage for business to do its thing (tax structure, better infrastructure, evenly applied regulation, enforcement of regulation), I’d support that.”

    Me too.
    I didn’t like Obama’s whole Green energy boondoggle thing, and would hate to see Trump following that template.
    What I would really like to see is a complete overhaul of the tax code, but one that focuses on using the tax code to raise revenue rather than to reward or punish individual/corporate behavior. If states or cities want to offer tax credits (bribes) , let them go at it.

    It will still be a full employment act for accountants and lawyers, because you can’t erase the laws that applied to prior tax years that will be litigated for decades, but there would be some hope for the future.

  102. The Carrier move isn’t much different from Obama’s rescue of the Detroit auto industry, also early in his tenure. Republicans all screamed, of course, but it actually played well with voters in the Midwest and may have been a reason he got enough support there for a second term. I think it was one of those things again where emotion and perception ruled.

  103. Beyond the optics, really disappointed with the Carrier negotiations! Trump has failed. Is it harbinger of things to come? Middling businessman as president leads to middling nation.

  104. “Personally, if government focused on setting the stage for business to do its thing (tax structure, better infrastructure, evenly applied regulation, enforcement of regulation), I’d support that.”

    Yes, of course opinions differ as to types of tax structure and regulations. Let’s see if Trump follows through on what he’s espoused.

  105. The alt-right folks can’t be any worse than Black Lives Matter.

    “We are feeling many things as we awaken to a world without Fidel Castro. There is an overwhelming sense of loss, complicated by fear and anxiety. Although no leader is without their flaws, we must push back against the rhetoric of the right and come to the defense of El Comandante. And there are lessons that we must revisit and heed as we pick up the mantle in changing our world, as we aspire to build a world rooted in a vision of freedom and the peace that only comes with justice. It is the lessons that we take from Fidel.”


    That essay might have been a welcome distraction from the unanimous decision by 15 veteran prosecutors that the Charlotte police shooting (of the allegedly unarmed man reading a book) was justified. Maybe next time that a black man is killed by police, Black Lives Matter will insist on an investigation before inciting riots.

  106. “Black Lives Matter will insist on an investigation before inciting riots.”

    I won’t hold my breath.

  107. You might want to note that the majority of the comments on this very leftist website denounce the article. And I don’t pay attention to any unsigned opinion pieces. Movements don’t write articles. Individual persons do.

  108. RSM – thanks that does make me feel better. I have tried to avoid a lot of these stories because the glowing eulogies just make me crazy. The world I live in full of Cuban exiles where I’m surrounded by people whose family members were imprisoned, tortured or executed. Hearing about the horror and injustice my whole life since I was a baby. Seeing family members crying about our loved ones being buried without ever returning to their country, etc…

    And then because I went to Ivy League undergrad and grad schools and have lived in the elite enclaves of the US, I have to constantly hear the American intelligentsia praise him and see young people wearing Che and Fidel t-shirts. Then having to hear about the re-opening. It’s a wound that’s constantly ripped open. And now the eulogies- I just want it to be over.

  109. Mooshi – a college classmate with whom I converse on Facebook, and who despises Trump, thinks that Mattis is God’s gift. The nickname, I imagine, is for alliterative purposes only.

  110. I’ve heard some good things about him, but he is also very hawkish in his views, and has no administrative experience. And most importantly, there is a rule against recently departed military serving as secretary of defense, and for good reason – the principle is civilian control of the DoD. He wold need a waiver, one which has only been granted once before, and even then very reluctantly for a ex-general who DID have a lot of managerial and adminstrative experience (Marshall)

  111. Yeah, they’ll get the waiver. I don’t know that he’s all that hawkish, but you may know more.

    And it’s not like the civilians of the past 15 years with no military experience have not been hawkish. Clinton(s), Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz…

    My bias is that at least retired generals have a slightly better understanding of the costs.

  112. I’m intrigued by Mattis, a voracious reader who has been criticized for making decisions on the fly but in actuality relies on his extensive knowledge of history combined with his own experience.

    “Alex the Great would not be in the least bit perplexed by the enemy that we face right now in Iraq”

    Maybe a different approach now will make us safer in the long term.  Is Mattis really more hawkish?  I don’t know.  Here’s one view.

    The nation has been at war for 15 years now, the last eight half-heartedly and with no appetite even for identifying the enemy, let alone engaging him aggressively. History will judge whether that’s the correct way for a great power to prosecute necessary conflicts in a complex and dangerous world, but for the short term, it’s clear that the Obama administration has produced a sanguinary shambles.

    The Mideast boils. Russia, pushed out of the region by Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger more than 40 years ago, has returned and is ascendant. Afghanistan is in stalemate. Pakistan teeters. Half a world away, America is in retreat and, recognizing this, the president of the Philippines travels to China to cast his nation’s lot with Beijing, while Japan and South Korea silently wonder about American leadership….

    Enter Mattis, a Marine Corps legend who was a little too tough on Iran for the outgoing administration’s tastes—hence his premature retirement—but who is now the president-elect’s pick to set things right at the Pentagon.

  113. The NYTimes likes him, which is not reassurring because they always have been on the hawk side. There is no question that Clinton has more hawkish views than Obama (which is a reason the NYTimes liked her), but the argument made here and other places was that Trump was less hawkish than Clinton, and right now his choices of several generals for top positions does not seem to support that. One of the dangers of relying on military people for what are usually civilian posts, and this is especially true when the President is as inexperienced as Trump, is that diplomatic strategies can get ignored.

  114. We’ve had eight years of an inexperienced President relying on a range of civilian foreign policy advisors to advance his diplomatic strategies, such as they are. The General seems like a certified grownup, with wisdom forged from a long, distinguished military career. It doesn’t seem like a huge risk, all things considered.

  115. He did a great job with China. Managed to dismantle a one China policy that started with Nixon. Hope you like the world that he will create for your grandchildren.

  116. Maybe he is a diversity hire after all.
    I have been impressed with the quality of Trump’s appointments so far. These are serious, accomplished people, not even remotely resembling the alt-right boogy people we were warned that we would see in a Trump administration.
    And some of them are NOT old white men, which the Democrats were whining about at the outset.

  117. Conway nailed this one, at a recent Harvard-sponsored election postmortem.

    “If providing a platform for white supremacists makes me a brilliant tactician, I am proud to have lost,” she said. “I would rather lose than win the way you guys did.” Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager, fumed: “Do you think I ran a campaign where white supremacists had a platform?”

    “You did, Kellyanne. You did,” interjected Palmieri, who choked up at various points of the session.

    “Do you think you could have just had a decent message for white, working-class voters?” Conway asked. “How about, it’s Hillary Clinton, she doesn’t connect with people? How about, they have nothing in common with her? How about, she doesn’t have an economic message?”

    Joel Benenson, Clinton’s chief strategist, piled on: “There were dog whistles sent out to people. . . . Look at your rallies. He delivered it.”

    At which point, Conway accused Clinton’s team of being sore losers. “Guys, I can tell you are angry, but wow,” she said. “Hashtag he’s your president. How’s that? Will you ever accept the election results? Will you tell your protesters that he’s their president, too?”


    It’s hard to remember that, for months, we heard dire warnings that Trump and his people would riot when (not if) he lost. Up until the eve of the election, in fact, when the Huffington Post breathlessly pontificated on “what could happen if Donald Trump doesn’t accept the election results”:

    “The most commonly cited danger of Trump refusing to accept the election outcome is that it could lead to violence.
    The idea isn’t so far-fetched. Trump rally attendees have physically and verbally abused protesters. Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke encouraged his fellow Trump supporters to take up pitchforks and torches following claims of a rigged election. And attacks on Clinton are even more vicious. In July, one Trump supporter said Clinton should be executed via firing squad. Trump himself suggested Clinton should be shot during a campaign rally in August. Another supporter followed suit in October, saying Clinton “needs to be taken out,” before adding, “If I have to be a patriot, I will.”
    And half of likely voters fear that violence may happen on Election Day, according to an October USA Today/Suffolk University poll. There’s also a threat that Trump refusing to concede could undermine democracy itself. It sounds extreme.”


  118. Scarlett – the constant crying and whining of her supporters, and even her staff, is what makes Trump’s victory continue to feel so sweet. I love it. The more essays they write, the better it is.

  119. Milo,
    Me too. I was never a Trump fan, but these people are becoming a parody of themselves.

  120. Scarlett, Milo, yeah, I’m still pretty peeved about Clinton losing while winning a decisive popular vote majority. How delightful to know it’s bringing you joy. That’s really what will bring the country together in these difficult times.

  121. I haven’t read or heard any account of HRC publicly complaining about the election results, to her credit, but the responses of her supporters make me feel better about the voters’ choice.

  122. Honolulu – You’re welcome. I’m loving it. People can come together as soon as they’re ready to accept the election results and maybe even drop the condescending moral superiority. Until then, I’m still enjoying the outraged essays, and there’s no shortage.

  123. What will bring the country together is accepting the result of a free and fair election.

  124. I think it was a free and fair election. But I am not much interested in coming together with Trump and his supporters without a huge shift in who they are and what the support.

  125. I agree with Kate. People have accepted the election results. What will bring the country together is Trump and his supporters reaching out to the other side and showing some genuine understanding and acknowledgement of their concerns.

  126. I’ve tried posting with links, and they get blocked.

    But from Kate’s comment, and a lot of things I’ve read, it would seem that a lot of Lefties are not interested in any outreach unless the other side changes their views, which seems rather presumptuous. It’s the result of political correctness run amok when the Left has taken for granted its power to silence and delegitimize viewpoints that are different from their own. Trump proved that we can overcome that, and they’re still having a tantrum about it.

  127. Scarlett – I agree. Trump and his supporters can have at it for 4-8 years. They won fair and square. But you can’t expect people not to criticize him and his supporters. And the assertion that you and Milo make that we will all come together if we just accept the results is just plain wrong. I and many others have accepted the results. We just think he and his supporters are terrible and there will be no coming together as long as he and Bannon and Sessions and Betsy De Vos and all of the others nuts he nominates are running things. You can expect that he and his cabinet of deplorables gets blamed for everything, just like Obama got blamed every time that it rained. Just the nature of the job, particularly when you run a divisive campaign with dog whistles that doesn’t win the popular vote.

  128. Milo – what kind of outreach are you thinking might be helpful? An apology for all Mexicans murderers and rapists or mocking a person with disabilities? If we start with those kinds of things, that would be great. I can handle policy differences. But Trump has openly mocked and insulted a whole lot of us and I don’t really care to come together with him until he rights that (which he never will).

  129. “We just think he and his supporters are terrible”

    Why do you think that I, and many in my family, are so terrible?

  130. I don’t know you or your family, so I have no opinion. I do know those in my family who supported him and they are terrible and this election has definitely encouraged them to be even more so.

  131. And just to be clear, when I say supporters, I mean his real supporters. Not those who held their noses and voted for him despite the things he said and did. But those who voted for him because of the things he said and did. I have zero tolerance for those kind of people ad truly think that they are terrible.

  132. But you apparently assume that all of his supporters are as terrible as your family. (And then you accuse Trump of making too broad a generalization about illegal immigrants, which is rich.)

  133. No. I am assuming that people who support him and think the things that he said were great are terrible. And I am ok making that leap.

  134. Kate, those comments are no different from Clinton’s reference to the basket of deplorables.

  135. Yes they are. One is about a group of people and what they believe (i.e., intolerant things in the viewpoint of many). The other is about a group of people and what they are or are not. It is the whole thing about not having to tolerate intolerance and the right’s insistence that the left is a bunch of hypocrites because the left doesn’t like the intolerant views of the right. I don’t think you (and Milo) and I will ever agree on this. We just see things very differently.

  136. The paradox of tolerance! From a personal perspective, I don’t much care if people think that I am tolerant. I fully admit that I am not about certain things. From a political perspective, we should have tolerance of beliefs. So, everyone is entitled to think/say whatever they want. But not all beliefs are equal or of the same merit. And people should speak out against those that are not. The whole market place of ideas. It really is ok to think someone is terrible because of their beliefs. I will always say that a person has a right to those beliefs, but it is appropriate to speak up against them. It is why I hate Trump a little more every time he goes after a first amendment issue.

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